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  • Review of Aegean Prehistory VII: Neopalatial, Final Palatial, and Postpalatial CreteAuthor(s): Paul Rehak and John G. YoungerSource: American Journal of Archaeology, Vol. 102, No. 1 (Jan., 1998), pp. 91-173Published by: Archaeological Institute of AmericaStable URL: 07/04/2009 10:02

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  • Review of Aegean Prehistory VII: Neopalatial, Final Palatial, and Postpalatial Crete


    Dedicated to our teachers, MachteldJ. Mellink and John L. Caskey* INTRODUCTION

    In an earlier article in this series, Watrous reviewed the archaeology of Crete from earliest times to the end of the Protopalatial period (MM II).1 We con- tinue from where he left off, focusing on Crete from MM III to the end of the Bronze Age (ca. 1700-1100 B.C.). Our main goals are twofold: to summarize crit- ically the present state of the field, concentrating especially on developments of the last 25 years, and to indicate issues, problems, and areas of investiga- tion that need to be addressed in the future.

    * We are grateful to Fred Kleiner and Tracey Cullen for the invitation to write this article and for their editorial assistance. We are also indebted to many individuals who gave freely of their knowledge, especiallyJ. Bennet, H. Blit- zer, G. Cadogan, E.H. Cline, L.H. Cole, W. Coulson, C. Davaras, L.P. Day, J. Driessen, T Eliopoulos, G. Gesell, B.P. Hallager, E. Hallager, B. Hayden, L. Hitchcock, S. Hood, A. Kanta, P. Kienzle, O.H. Krzyszkowska, R. Laffineur, M. Lee, A. Lembesi, C. Lilyquist, L. Little, C.F. Macdonald,J.A. MacGillivray, S.W. Manning, J. Moody, P. Muhly, M. Ni- kolaidou, B. Olsen, C. Palyvou, I. Pini, G. Rethemiotakis, J. Rutter, L.H. Sackett, I.A. Sakellarakis, E. Sapouna- Sakellaraki, M. Schmid, C. Shelmerdine, J. Soles, M. Tsi- popoulou, A.M.P.A. Van de Moortel, L.V. Watrous,J. Wein- garten, and J. Zielinski.

    The following abbreviations have been used: Aegean and Orient E.H. Cline and D. Harris-Cline eds., The

    Aegean and the Orient in the Second Mil- lennium. Proceedings of the 50th Anni- versary Symposium, Cincinnati, 18-20 April 1997 (Aegaeum 18, forthcoming).

    Archanes I.A. Sakellarakis and E. Sapouna- Sakellaraki, Archanes (Athens 1991).

    Atlas J.W. Myers, E.E. Myers, and G. Cadogan eds., The Aerial Atlas of Ancient Crete (Berkeley 1992).

    Begg I. Begg, Minoan Storerooms in the Late Bronze Age (Diss. Univ. of Toronto 1975).

    Cline E.H. Cline, Sailing the Wine-Dark Sea. International Trade and the Late Bronze Age Aegean (BAR-IS 591, Oxford 1994).

    CM S. Marinatos and M. Hirmer, Crete and Mycenae (New York 1960).

    CretCong Ta HenrpaypE9va too AIeOvoVq KpiTro- XOoYIKO6 Evve6piov.

    Doumas C. Doumas, The Wall-Paintings of Thera (Athens 1992).

    Some changes have occurred since the earlier re- view and new sources of information have become available: Nestor, a listing of bibliography, has moved from Indiana University to the University of Cincin- nati and is published in hard copy and on diskette, and will be responsible for future updates of the Inter- national Directory of Aegean Prehistorians (IDAP). The electronic mail discussion network AegeaNet has pro- vided a public forum for a wide range of Aegean topics since 1993. Increasing use is being made of the Internet by archaeologists, and the scholarly ac- ceptance of electronic publication is steadily gain-

    Eikon R. Laffineur and J.L. Crowley eds., EIKC5V: Aegean Bronze Age Iconography. Shaping a Methodology (Aegaeum 8, Liege 1992).

    Ergon To Epyov rrTl Ap%alo),oylK7i; EraipEia;. Gesell G. Gesell, Tonm, Palace and House Cult

    in Minoan Crete (SIMA 67, Goteborg 1985).

    Hallager E. Hallager, The Minoan Roundel and Other Sealed Documents in the Neopala- tial Linear A Administration I-II (Aegae- um 14, Liege 1996).

    Immerwahr S. Immerwahr, Aegean Painting in the Bronze Age (London 1991).

    Jones R.E.Jones, Greek and Cypriot Pottery (BSA Fitch Laboratory Occasional Paper 1, Lon- don 1986).

    Kanta A. Kanta, The Late Minoan III Period on Crete: A Survey of Sites, Pottery, and Their Distribution (SIMA 58, Goteborg 1980).

    Kommos I J. Shaw and M. Shaw eds., Kommos I: The Kommos Region and the Houses of the Mi- noan Town, pt. 1 (Princeton 1995); pt. 2 (Princeton 1996).

    Kommos III L.V. Watrous, Kommos III: The Late Bronze Age Pottery (Princeton 1992).

    Palaces R. Hagg and N. Marinatos eds., The Func- tion of the Minoan Palaces (Stockholm 1987).

    PGC H.-G. Buchholz and V. Karageorghis, Pre- historic Greece and Cyprus (New York 1973).

    Politeia R. Laffineur and W-D. Niemeier eds., Politeia: Society and State in the Aegean Bronze Age (Aegaeum 12, Liege 1995).

    Sanctuaries R. Hagg and N. Marinatos eds., Sanctu- aries and Cults in the Aegean Bronze Age (Stockholm 1981).

    91 American Journal of Archaeology 102 (1998) 91-173


    ing ground.2 Other important tools include the con- tinuing publication of seals and sealings in the CMS and its Beihefte, and the compilation of Linear A texts in GORILA.

    Since 1987, the Aegaeum series has provided a timely venue for the publication of conferences and mono- graphs on Aegean subjects, and the latest Cretolog- ical Congress took place in Herakleion on 10-13 September 1996. Authoritative publication volumes for a number of important sites are appearing or imminent, including Mallia, Mochlos, Chania, Ka- vousi, Kommos, Kato Syme, and Pseira. The palace at Knossos, which never received a final report in the modern sense, is now being published by areas.3 Much important information can be gleaned on in- dividual sites from the photographs and bibliogra- phies in The Aerial Atlas of Ancient Crete (Atlas). An important archaeological resource, the East Cretan Center, endowed by the Institute for Aegean Prehis- tory, was inaugurated on 19 July 1997, and will be used by excavations all over the east end of the is- land primarily for study and the storage of finds.

    On Crete, the Late Bronze Age is a long and com-

    Society O.H. Krzyszkowska and L. Nixon eds., Minoan Society. Proceedings of the Cam- bridge Colloquium, 1981 (Bristol 1983).

    TAW I-III C. Doumas ed., Thera and the Aegean World I (London 1978); Doumas ed., Thera and the Aegean World II (London 1980); D.A. Hardy et al. eds., Thera and the Aegean World III.1: Archaeology; 2: Earth Sciences; 3: Chronology (London 1990).

    Techne R. Laffineur and P.P. Betancourt eds., TgX%vI: Craftsmen, Craftswomen and Craftsmanship in the Aegean Bronze Age (Aegaeum 16, Liege 1997).

    Thalassocracy R. Hagg and N. Marinatos eds., The Minoan Thalassocracy, Myth and Reality (Stockholm 1984).

    Zakros N. Platon, Zakros: The Discovery of a Lost Palace of Ancient Crete (New York 1971).

    l L.V. Watrous, "Review of Aegean Prehistory III: Crete from Earliest Prehistory through the Protopalatial Period," AJA 98 (1994) 695-753; and relevant papers byJ.D. Evans, D. Wilson, J.A. MacGillivray, and G. Cadogan in D. Evely et al. eds., Knossos: A Labyrinth of History (Oxford 1994).

    2J.E Cherry and J.L. Davis eds., IDAP2 (1995): http: /11129.137.36.38/nestorlIDAP/isearch.html. URL for "Argos," a search engine for limited areas in the ancient and me- dieval worlds:; "Kapatija," a web site for web sites in Aegean and classical archaeology:; and "Abzu," a web site for web sites in Near Eastern archaeology: http: // HTML.

    plex period and presents a variety of problems, be- ginning with terminology and chronology. There is general agreement that the Neopalatial period be- gan after widespread destruction of the Protopala- tial centers at the end of MM II and endured through the pottery phases MM III, LM IA, and LM IB. The beginning of this period and the distinction between MM IIIA and B remain hazy, however.4 In particu- lar, little agreement exists about the causes of the MM II destructions.

    The era following another destruction horizon at the end of the Neopalatial period in LM IB has been called "Postpalatial," based largely on developments observed at Knossos. In recent years, however, it has become clear that palatial administrative activity con- tinued at Knossos until LM IIIA2-B early (discussed below), and certainly into LM IIIB at Chania. It there- fore seems misleading to use the term "Postpalatial" for the pottery phases LM II-LM IIIB early, wh